Grief has a way of parking us up in our head. When we lose someone we dearly love, or something we cherish like a job, a home, or a country we love, fear is the first response. Confused by the loss of certainty, the brain, feels scrambled.
The monkey mind takes over and does not stop chattering. It gives you all the reasons why life is going to be an uphill battle, and you’re going to be a loser.
I’m going to be alone for the rest of my life.
This pain will never go away.
I will struggle to find another job.
I will run out of money very soon.
The real problem is, we begin to believe all these thoughts. Especially the darkest, scariest, most negative ones. We become convinced that these situations WILL happen to us. We’re constantly on the alert because life feels threatening.
When the mind starts spinning these horrifying scenarios, we imagine the worst and fear intensifies. This is the disaster Geneen Roth speaks about. We live in the space of swirling thoughts and abandon the life that’s right here, right now.
Desperate to find safety, the mind also starts searching for solutions.
What if I applied to that position in the community college?
Maybe I need to find a therapist to handle my grief.
I could put the house on the market and move to a small apartment.
Over time, living up in our heads becomes a habit and we forget to be present to the life that’s right here, in front of us. It’s true that we have troubles. At the same time, when we look around we also find much to be thankful for.
- Maybe it’s a bright sunny day you wake up to.
- You see a flower in bloom.
- There’s a fresh cup of coffee waiting for you.
- On your drive to work, you listen to music and that lifts your spirits, however briefly.
As we’re dealing with our struggles, we mustn’t forget to live the life we’ve been given. Because life is lived in the NOW. If most of your needs are taken care of in this moment and you bring a sense of gratitude for that, you create more of what you need as you move forward.